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NIDA Home > Drugs of Abuse/Related Topics > Steroids (Anabolic)

Steroids (Anabolic)

Mostly synthetic substances similar to the male sex hormone testosterone. Some people, especially athletes, abuse anabolic steroids to enhance performance and appearance. Abuse of anabolic steroids can lead to serious health problems, some of which are irreversible..
Major effects of steroid abuse can occur due to hormone imbalances in the body. In males, adverse effects may include shrinking of the testicles and breast development. In females, adverse effects may include growth of facial hair, menstrual changes, and deepened voice. In teenagers, growth may be halted prematurely and permanently. Other adverse effects can include severe acne, high blood pressure and jaundice. In some rare cases liver and kidney tumors or even cancer may develop.
and Trends:

The NIDA-funded 2007 Monitoring the Future Study showed that 0.8% of 8th graders, 1.1% of 10th graders, and 1.4% of 12th graders had abused anabolic steroids at least once in the year prior to being surveyed. Source: Monitoring the Future

NIDA's Featured Publications

NIDA Infofacts: Steroids NIDA InfoFacts: Steroids (Anabolic-Androgenic). Brief description of the health hazards of using anabolic steroids for non-medical purposes. For a general audience. (Fact sheet).
En Español

Research Reports:  Steroids NIDA Research Report: Anabolic Steroid Abuse. Detailed look at current research findings. For a general audience. (Report).
En Español

Other Resources on Steroids

View all related NIDA publications >> 1734761since 10/25/99
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